African filmmaker, Imole O. Ladipo, shared her vision of storytelling from themes she observes in her own community with us. All three of Ladipo’s award-winning short films, ‘Hello Yesterday,’ ‘Wahala Be Like Bicycle – Disaster Date,’ and ‘GPS’ will screen at the 21st Annual Women of African Descent Film Festival on Saturday, June 10th at 3:40pm at the Billie Holiday Theater at the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration. .
East New York News: Imole, we are excited to chat with you about your films. As a filmmaker who started out doing videos for your church, what was the catalyst for starting your production company?
Imole: First off, thank you for talking with me today. My experience all started with one task ahead of me, which was, as you mentioned, creating visual forms of announcements at my church. I was also in a stage play ministry in church, so I started thinking of how to blend visuals using the camera, so hundreds of people could watch it
ENY: At the time, did you think about the process? Can you walk us through what your writing and your creative process look like? What is it that fueled you?
Imole: Yes, I certainly did [think about the process]. I work with great writers who fine-tune and make the creations I pen down, better! They work with me on every line and every step to bring it to life. What fuels me? Life…living life has taught me about the great highs and the lowest lows. I am a believer that people gravitate better toward what they can relate to. I am for those people that have gone through life and somehow are able to hope for more. I am here to tell those stories.
ENY: How are the themes in your films relevant to the African community?
Imole: Oh! The themes are so relevant to everyone, especially Africans. For instance, the film, ‘GPS,’ is about a couple going through infertility. The wife is considering alternative medicines, but the husband frowns against it. He wants to wait and he wants to fix the issue. But, the real issue is not about infertility, it’s about opening the conversation that, if infertility happens, then what? Can we consider other options? Adoption, IVF, or maybe nothing, and let it BE! Infertility affects many…studies have shown it affects black people more than any other race, so I’m glad that we can address this and talk about it.
ENY: That is so interesting. With themes like infertility and other themes you address in your films, what do you hope the audience will gain from each of the films?
Imole: Hope. Restoration. Answers. I hope we can look in the mirror and perhaps consider changing who we are. Being better than we were yesterday is the goal we should all strive for.
ENY: What is on the horizon for Lumiere Films?
Imole: Besides the screening this weekend – please come out to see it, our upcoming premiere event will be held in Houston, Texas on October 7th of this year. We are also considering doing more feature films and web series in the near future. Thank you for having me!
ENY: Thank YOU for taking the time to chat with us.
ABOUT THE FILMS
‘Wahala Be Like Bicycle – Disaster Date’ is a short comedy that follows Deola, who finally gets to go on a date with the man she’s been chatting with since the lockdown. Little does she know that she’s in for a night of her life. See the Trailer below.
‘Hello Yesterday’ is a silent short film about a young professional, who gets so caught up in her ‘life’ that she loses perspective on the things that truly matter.